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Galloway and Collens, PLLC Legal Blog

Work with experienced attorney to cover your bases before purchasing a new home

Purchasing a home is a big financial move for anybody to make, and it is important to do one's homework so as to avoid problems after the transaction is complete. For those looking to purchase a home, getting a good inspection is important since a properly trained inspector can help spot potential problems with the property so that these issues can be addressed in the negotiation process, or so the interested party can move on.

Home inspection is not an area where you want to try to skimp or skip out altogether. Doing so may have no consequences in the end, but in some cases it can lead to major problems and cost homeowners a lot of money, particularly if problems arise with respect to the dwelling's structure, mechanicals, plumbing, and hidden aspects of the condition of the home.

Steps to take to protect an inheritance in Michigan

For financially stable families in Michigan, a great deal of pride may be taken in the act of leaving a significant inheritance to a family member. However, Michigan residents may want to consider the downside of leaving a family member a large sum of money. For some families, the concern may lie with what a beneficiary will do with his or her inheritance. For other families, concerns may stem from wanting to protect assets from tax or other liabilities.

One tale of an inheritance situation gone wrong involves a man who was a real estate developer. The man took out a $25 million loan for a condominium project. The project failed when the recession hit, and the man defaulted on the massive loan. In the midst of this financial crisis for the man, his uncle passed away and left him a significant amount of money.

When a tenant engages in illegal activity

Finding out that a tenant engaged in illegal activity on the property they are renting can be a very alarming discovery for a landlord. When a landlord makes such a discovery in regards to one of their tenants, it can be very important for the landlord to respond properly.

There are many different reasons for this. One is that illegal activity at a rental property can pose a threat to the safety of all of its tenants. Illegal activity on a rental property can also potentially have significant negative impacts on a property's reputation and financial well-being.

Childless Michigan couples should consider estate plan options

Couples with children may be apt to go about the estate planning process in a timely fashion as they realize the importance of protecting minor children and ensuring proper care of those children should something happen to both parents. Michigan couples who don't yet or won't ever have children should not postpone creating an estate plan, as it is also important that these couples protect assets and each other in the event one of them dies. There are certain steps a childless couple may want to consider when considering a comprehensive estate plan.

If there are joint assets and one spouse dies, the other spouse generally receives those assets without much complication or dispute. However, if there are individual assets and the spouse they belong to dies without a will in place, the assets have to go through the intestate probate process. This can make the process costly and time-consuming for a surviving spouse or other family members, making a stressful time even more so.

Important to have legal help with residential real estate deal

The act of buying or selling residential real estate can be the biggest financial decision or venture some people ever undertake. As with any important financial undertaking, it is advisable to have sound advice and up-to-date information. For those deciding to sell or buy residential real estate worth more than $250,000, legal advice from a trusted Michigan real estate lawyer can be the best protection available. 

There are many legal documents that need to be drafted during such a pricey transaction. With an attorney by your side, you can feel confident in the drafting and review of all documents, including closing documents. At times, a residential real estate transaction can involve disputes. An attorney may need to intervene and resolve a dispute so the deal can move forward.

Drafting a strong commercial lease agreement

When an owner of a Michigan commercial property is in a transaction to lease the property to a business, there are many things that can be very important for the property owner. One is having a strong commercial lease agreement that properly protects their rights and interests and is enforceable. A strong commercial lease agreement can go a long way in increasing predictability in a commercial lease arrangement and making clear what the responsibilities and rights of the parties to the lease are.

Drafting a strong commercial lease agreement can be a very complex process. Our Michigan law firm understands the ins and outs of careful drafting of commercial lease agreements and can provide commercial lease agreement drafting services to commercial property owners who desire to lease out their property. We strive to help our clients who are in commercial lease transactions get the right commercial lease agreement in place for their situation.

Figures show more Americans are purchasing vacation homes

Dreams of buying a new car or boat, taking a trip around the world or even renovating a home have been stymied for many people in recent years thanks to the fallout from the recession, which saw record foreclosures, falling home prices, a jump in unemployment and battered retirement accounts.

Things have changed, however, thanks to the sustained economic recovery, including strong gains in both the stock market and labor market. Indeed, many of these distant dreams are now starting to become a reality for many Americans.

A closer look at 'animal house' ordinances

The unfortunate reality is that almost every rental property owner has some sort of experience dealing with less than ideal tenants. While these tenants may have been problematic due to more minor issues like excessive noise or bothersome pets, still others might have been problematic because of more serious issues like criminal activities.

While the laws in every state certainly give landlords the right to evict these types of problem tenants, the reality is that this isn't always the easiest feat to accomplish without legal assistance and can weeks, if not months.

Time for generation X to think about legacy and estate plans

Members of Generation X are in a unique period of life where it is time to think about an estate plan for themselves and also time to be sure they know what type of plan their parents have adopted. Anyone considered to be Gen X -- typically those individuals born between 1965 and 1980 -- may choose to decide what kind of legacy and estate plan will best suit their needs and the needs of their family. Michigan Generation Xers may benefit from some of the tips and guidelines below.

If a Gen X person or couple has minor children, having a will, powers or attorney and possibly a living trust is imperative. This is to ensure children are cared for as the parents deem appropriate should both die. This will allow for a timely transfer of assets and arrange for the day to care of the children, which could make a difficult situation much smoother for all left behind.

Renting out a property can have both benefits and challenges

There are many things a person here in Michigan might decide to do with a residential property they own. One is to rent it out to tenants.

There are many things that could make becoming a landlord by renting out a property one owns an attractive option for a person. Some examples of benefits renting out a residential property to tenants can have include:

  • Rental income.
  • Having an income stream that allows you to be your own boss.
  • Tax benefits: There are a wide range of deductions a person may be able to claim in relation to a property they rent out to tenants, such as deductions for home office expenses, travel, repairs, depreciation and interest.

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